Company Chairman Anthony (right) is welcomed by Staten Island Borough President James Oddo

Pratt Industries announced today it would lead a unique coalition of government, private enterprise, trade associations and non-profits to increase recycling rates and environmental awareness among students and teachers in dozens of New York City schools.

Pratt chairman Anthony Pratt was joined by local leaders including Staten Island Borough President James S. Oddo in releasing details of the program, which for the first time will introduce a detailed anti-littering, pro-recycling curriculum across schools on Staten Island, eventually reaching more than 20,000 students.

“This is a great day for the city of New York and particularly the Borough of Staten Island,” said Anthony in announcing the sponsorship. “We’re proud to join this team and lend our support to this ambitious undertaking.”

Our company and Borough President Oddo spearheaded the program with the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (ISRI), the national trade association representing the recycling industry. The curriculum was developed by ISRI with Jason Learning, a nonprofit organization and long-time partner of the National Geographic Society, which was founded in 1989 by oceanographer Dr. Robert D. Ballard to inspire and educate children through real science and exploration. It also provides lesson plans and development programs for teachers and educators.

“This is a win-win for all those who call Staten Island home,” Anthony told students and educators in announcing the program at a local high. “Our company will take all the paper you collect under this initiative to our paper mill right here on Staten Island, where it will be made into new 100% recycled paper and then converted by us into brand new 100 percent recycled packaging, helping to deliver everything from your computers to tonight’s pizza.”

Some of the students who will benefit from the new curriculum

The syllabus will be introduced on a trial basis at 10 Staten Island schools over the next few weeks and then expanded borough-wide next school year to eventually include more than 35 of Staten Island’s public schools.

Borough President Oddo said a key component of the curriculum would carry an anti-litter component in an “effort to prevent the next generation of litterers, and the best way to do that is through education and increasing recycling rates.”

“We are here as a result of a meeting I had last summer with the folks from Pratt Industries who informed me about the ISRI/Jason Learning curriculum, and Pratt’s ability to secure the Jason resources due to Pratt’s membership and participation in ISRI,” said Oddo. “Education is undoubtedly the key component to exhibiting the environmentally favorable behavior that we want to incent, and this pro-recycling, anti-litter message will positively affect the kids in these schools.”

Staten Island is one of only three municipalities nationwide that ISRI is supporting for Jason Learning. The other pilot programs are being rolled out in Kalamazoo, Michigan and Baltimore, Maryland.

Pratt will cover costs and host the professional development of staff from participating schools at the paper mill on the island on June 4. We will also host school tours at the facility so students can see first-hand how the paper recycling process works as well as donating recycling bins that have been placed in the participating schools.